Saturday, July 31, 2010

Johnny Cakes -- Early American Cornmeal Pancakes

July's destination at
My Kitchen My World was the Good Old U. S. of A. and after much deliberating I decided to make an early American cornmeal pancake recipe called Johnny Cakes. This recipe is believed to have been taught to US settlers by Native Americans.

Johnny Cakes go by many names, one of the more popular being Journey Cakes -- because they were an easy food to make on a journey and also held up well to traveling after making. Shawnee Cake is another popular name, which gives credit to the Shawnee Indians for teaching this recipe to early settlers.

Johnny Cakes
adapted from

1/2 cup flour
1 cup cornmeal
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 cup hot milk
1 tablespoon melted butter -- plus more for griddle, if desired

Mix the dry ingredients, then stir in the remaining ingredients. Drop or pour on the hot, greased griddle or drop in iron skillet and fry to golden brown on both sides. Serve with butter and syrup as for pancakes, or serve as a bread with butter. Serves 4 to 6. You can also serve these as a side dish at a savory meal.

We enjoyed these with butter and maple syrup. My kids all liked them and I thought they were delicious too, but I don't think I've ever met a pancake I didn't like :) They were dense and slightly chewy with a great little crunch from the cornmeal around the edges. I will be making Johnny Cakes again for sure, and really enjoyed the little history lesson I got to share with my kids.


Kayte said...

What a perfect choice! Love it...and will love making these. They look so good, don't they? Going there for sure. Thanks for the pick this gave us all a pause for thinking it through...always fun in a challenge. Eager to see next month's destination. Thanks for all you do on this!

Anonymous said...

They look fabulous! I've heard of Johnny Cakes, but didn't know what they were, so thanks for the history and the great recipe.

Peggy said...

This is my first month with your group. It's so fun to see what everyone chose. Love the history lesson with yours. Can't wait to see what next month is!

TeaLady said...

Looks like the Native Americans were very popular for MKMW. But then they are the quintessential American.

Haven't made Johnny Cakes in years. Dad used to love them. Have to try your version.

Torviewtoronto said...

simply delicious

Hanaâ said...

Yum, these look very light and fluffy! Gotta try it sometime (maybe tomorrow). Thanks for sharing!

Baking is my Zen...sweet nibbles for the soul said...

Love pancakes. This is new (for me). I'll give these a try.

If you are interested…
Don't forget to stop by my blog.
Baking is my Zen will be having a COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY
from August 8 through August 14, 2010.

The giveaway will be the ‘not yet released’ cookbook,
Baked Explorations: Classic American Desserts Reinvented
By Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito


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